Tonight’s two hour season opener for Law & Order: Special Victims Unit gave LOST fans a treat as Desmond Hume himself, Henry Ian Cusick, took center stage as this week’s special guest star. I was shocked at how the two hours transpired and how Cusick’s role of photographer/pedophile hunter Erik Weber figured into the two separate cases. In short, the role of Weber was far from that of Desmond Hume.
In the first hour, “Locum”, the Special Victims Squad deals with a case about a foster family, whose adopted daughter is scared of them due to the parents (Joan Cusack and Peter Strauss) odd behavior revolving around the disappearance of their biological daughter years before. Cusick’s role of Erik Weber comes in as a decoy for the little girl’s plans to runaway. Turns out that Erik is a part of an anti-pedophile group that he formed after his sister killed herself after being raped.
After he is cleared, Erik later flirts with Det. Olivia Benson (Mariska Hargitay), setting up a potential romantic pairing between the two. The story, in a traditional SVU twist, ends up being ripped from the headlines of the infamous Jaycee Dugard case.
Cusick’s role was featured more prominently in the second hour titled “Bullseye” as his anti-pedophile group becomes a nuisance to the detectives after a string of little girls are attacked by a serial rapist. This is where Cusick shines as he woos Olivia with not only his charms, but his passion for cleaning the streets of pedophiles as well. But in the world of SVU, nothing is as good as it seems, and Erik Weber is just too good to be true. This episode’s twist? Erik is really the serial child rapist!!! OH NO!!! NOT DESMOND HUME!!!!
When the truth is revealed, Cusick explodes as he goes from innocent victim to perverted menace in a New York minute. It rattled my core to see Cusick end up being a malicious, sick criminal, but the man is working hard to shed his Desmond image, and this role could be a damn good first step.
Fans of LOST will be thrilled to see Henry Ian Cusick kick ass in this role, even if his performance chills them to the bone.